May 13, 2014

Human rights and religion

The kidnapping of more than 200 Nigerian schoolgirls by the extremist Islamic sect Boko Haram, which condemns Western education for women, spotlights the question of whether religious beliefs can ever be allowed to override "accepted norms" and human rights.

Mar 18, 2014

Combating climate change

Britain's former ambassador to Japan urges public pressure on governments to stop their shilly-shalling over unresolved questions about whether human activity is contributing the most to climate change and to get on with concluding effective agreements on curbing carbon emissions.

Feb 18, 2014

NHK's neutrality is essential

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's expression of right-wing extremism has not aroused much attention in British media so far, but if the risks of a confrontation with China escalate, memories of the maltreatment of British POWs during the Pacific War are certain to be revived.

Feb 4, 2014

Abe's reactionary leadership

The Japanese government has so far failed to give meaningful reassurances about how the reactionary and potentially dangerous state secrets law, rammed through the Japanese Diet in December, will operate.

Jan 24, 2014

Playing with fire is dangerous

Any moves that Japanese leaders make at this time to start the process of amending the Constitution would arouse strong feelings in Japan and abroad, against the nation's interests.

Jan 13, 2014

Abe should end Yasukuni visits

Ever since Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visited Yasukuni Shrine last month, a former British ambassador to Japan has been trying to guess what Abe's motives for such an act could have been.

Dec 9, 2013

Brits feel squeeze on income

Although the British economy seem at least to be showing signs of recovery, it remains difficult for young people to get on the property ladder despite low interest rates.

Nov 11, 2013

The refugees deserving of tolerance

The belief that "charity begins at home" is used by many to justify their opposition to immigration and is reinforced by allegations that immigrants to Europe take jobs from locals.